Bulgaria arrests two lorry drivers transporting 64 migrants illegally

Two Bulgarian lorry drivers were arrested after being found transporting 64 foreign nationals illegally near the town of Vratsa in the north-western part of the country, the Interior Ministry said on October 14.

The ministry said that on the night of October 13, police from Vratsa stopped two lorries that were travelling on the E80 road. Examination of the lorries found a group of men in one of the vehicles, a goods lorry, and women and children in the other vehicle.

The two drivers, aged 54 and 31 and from the city of Vidin, were arrested and face pre-trial proceedings, the ministry said.

After medical check-ups, the foreign nationals were taken to a refugee centre in Elhovo. Their nationalities were yet to be established.

The ministry said that late on October 12, a group of 44 foreign nationals were detained in the village of Rakitnitsa by border police from Bregovo, in north-western Bulgaria. The foreigners said that they were from Iraq and Syria.

Separately, 15 illegal immigrants who said that they were citizens of Afghanistan, who were travelling in two vehicles, were detained in an operation by the Regional Police Directorate in Sofia.

In the first case, a car was stopped on the road to the Kalotina border checkpoint. The 31-year-old driver, from Sofia, was detained and seven people taken into custody.

In the second case, eight refugees from Afghanistan were detained. The driver, from Plovdiv, was arrested.

About 20 illegal immigrants were arrested in a police operation near Lion Bridge in Sofia, police said. The migrants had no identification documents. Police told Bulgarian National Radio that they were conducting checks in the area nightly because of the increased presence of foreign nationals in that part of the capital city.

(Photo: Bart Groenhuizen/sxc.hu)



The Sofia Globe staff

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